Thursday, October 19, 2017

Sputnik (for as much as one can believe Sputnik):

October 10, 2017

Remarkable progress (click here) was achieved with signing the Minsk peace agreements which ended violence in the war-torn east of Ukraine. However, the bill on the reintegration of the eastern regions adopted by the Ukrainian authorities runs counter to the agreements and threatens to ruin the whole architecture of the political settlement.

Moscow (Sputnik) — Russia has been and will continue to be a guarantor of the Minsk agreements that lay out the conditions for the peaceful resolution of the conflict between Kiev and regions in eastern Ukraine, Kremlin spokesman Dmitry Peskov said Thursday.

The Minsk peace accords lay out a detailed 13 point-roadmap toward the settlement of the Ukrainian crisis. First and foremost, the agreements stipulate a complete ceasefire and withdrawal of all heavy weapons in order to create a security zone. However, the accords extend beyond a cessation of hostilities as they also include implementation of fundamental reforms in Ukraine in order to decentralize power and give to the Donetsk and Lugansk regions a special status....

The real problem for Russia in regard to Ukraine, is one of ADMITTING Ukraine is a highly dynamic country with many successful businesses. Russia has to realize Ukraine is friendly to Europe as it was friendly to Russia under Yanukovych.

Ukrainians are strongly interested in democracy and the free market. They have no desire to return to it's past identity when USSR had a nuclear site aimed at Europe. Ukrainians had lived so long as a shield for Russia in harboring its nuclear facilities, the desire for peace is overwhelming.

Ukraine harbors little patience with Russia's desire to hold onto it. This is not unique among the post Soviet states. They are along Europe, as is St. Petersburg. These wonderful people see impoverishment to it's Russian border and prosperity to it's European border. Hello? The idea these countries are going to see Russia as their future is extremely naive.

Russia has to move forward as a BRIC country. We are all waiting for that reality. When Russia finally gets caught up with the rest of the world in attempting to have strong economies that IMPROVE THE QUALITY OF LIFE of the people it will receive more and better attention to change to benevolent relationships in the future. I admire the fact Russia, as a communist country, seeks to take care of the Russian people regardless of the economic voracity of the country, but, to the young people looking to the future this is not the path they seek.

Sometimes, I think Russia is caught up in its international image that enforces the global balance of power as an antagonist to the USA. If Russia were to have a profile of economic strength that trades with post Soviet states engaged in a relationship with Europe as well; would countries such as North Korea trust Russia with diplomatic missions? That is a problem for Russia.

Quite frankly, North Korea has plenty reason to fear it's neighbors. Russia and China are not minor players in the nuclear membership of the world. North Korea has to know it is conducting scientific investigation into nuclear warfare that is not grounded in good science and is dangerous. North Korea has to know in it's poorly practiced, 'hit and miss' nuclear science, is viewed in limited patience with it's nuclear agenda. I would think the USA is the least of North Korea's worry if it continues down this path. I am confident President Putin balances North Korea's sovereignty with the safety of the Russian people. I would think, in that reality, lies a Russia that does not have to compromise an economy for it's nuclear identity. The two should be compatible and incorporated into a country that embraces the future and safety of it's children on all counts.

President Putin denies involvement in the 2016 elections. Well, as a man that seems to like Donald Trump and respects him as the properly elected President, I would expect President Putin to deny those allegations. In that, President Putin should not take offense to the fact there is an ongoing investigation that the American people believes necessary. These investigations are to uphold the laws of the USA and protect from such interference no matter the source. To that end I would expect President Putin and Russia to realize the American people, no different than Russians, want to know what is happening in the country's  elections.

During the panel discussion today, it was mentioned the USA interferes in almost every election in the world. If that is the case, then where is the evidence in a UN resolution? I would not be surprised there is USA interference. The past of the USA can expose a great deal of harm to other countries through methods of intelligence. If Americans realize the extent the USA has tentacles into the world, they might view interference into it's elections with enlightenment and not a means to an end that will result in stupid war. 

It is interesting to realize the USA values intelligence that provides advantage to USA national security, but, when that intelligence capacity is turned to domestic policy that effects national security, attacks such as 911 are somehow overlooked. Odd, isn't it? Then again, not so odd when realizing an invasion into Afghanistan was then abandoned for a war in Iraq that benefited Halliburton. In that reality, the compilation of USA interference in other countries should be interesting.

The RT broadcast was more than interesting to me. It was good to see everyone again. I hope this talk by Alibaba of instilling an economy in Afghanistan goes forward to make the country stronger. In realizing the ideas of the Afghan economy has come this far, it is no surprise then that the Taliban are coming into compliance as well.

The OAC.

June 7, 2013

Minsk,7 June (BelTA) – President of the Republic of Belarus Alexander Lukashenko (click here) has presented a banner to the Operational and Analytical Center under the Aegis of the President of Belarus (OAC), BelTA informs. The banner will serve as a symbol of honor, valor and glory, a reminder of the sacred duty to defend the Fatherland.

“The banner presented to the Operational and Analytical Center is acknowledgement of its high status as a government agency responsible for the national security. Over the five years since it was established, the center has made extraordinary progress and has demonstrated great professionalism in addressing a variety of challenges. The center’s staff are courageous and honest people who are devoted to what they do and who always justify the trust put in them,” the President wrote in his message to the OAC....

Live event on RT.

Russian President Vladimir Putin, (click here) former Afghan President Hamid Karzai and the co-founder of e-commerce giant Alibaba Group, Jack Ma, are taking part in a discussion panel at the 14th Annual Meeting of the Valdai Discussion Club in Sochi.

Alibaba is instant infrastructure. (click here) They offer everything but the kitchen sink and there may be a few of those. Alibaba is non-productive for local economies. Local economies are labor intensive and provide real jobs to people. But, in the case of Afghanistan, Alibaba will provide ideas, supplies and raw materials to begin their economy on a more modern path. 

Former President Karzai would be interested in Afghanistan and it's future. I am not surprised he is looking for economic alliances with Russia and in the case of Alibaba, China. Karzai, from the beginning of the USA invasion into Afghanistan, never denied Afghanistan's need for relationships with it's neighbors. Karzai, early on in the USA invasion, asked "W" for a summit with Iran to realize a greater peace for the region. "W" declined. 

Alibaba is incorrect. Computers are not smarter than people, although AI provides a danger to the human race; but, computers are made by people and are not smarter than people.

Computers are an enhancement to the human experience. Alibaba is an internet company similar to Amazon. It is understandable how a CEO involved with a densely computer based company would worship the idea computers are more intelligent than people. Such CEOs want to believe computers can control their markets.

To the human race, really?

This gives me a chance to visit the reality of the USA military. The battle for Raqqa is being touted in the US media as a victory for Trump. The facts are plan and in order to find the complexity and reporting supporting the truth has to be taken from Al Jazeera (Al Jazeera has mastered the reporting of intense fighting that occurs in the Middle East. The USA calls it "Urban Warfare."):

It was the Peshmerga that concluded the defeat of Daesh. The Peshmerga is maintaining the occupation currently. This is a background article from March of 2017. The Peshmerga has a deep interest in the Syrian Kurds.

March 28, 2017
By Mariya Petkova

...For the past two months, (click here) US allies have waited impatiently for an outline of Washington's strategy to capture the city from the Islamic State of Iraq and the Levant (ISIL, also known as ISIS).

Defeating ISIL was claimed to be President Donald Trump's top foreign policy priority shortly after his inauguration. Capturing Raqqa has come to be viewed as the high point of his administration's strategy to take on the group. However, instead of proceeding with a plan that the Obama administration had prepared, Trump's team dismissed it and in late January asked the Pentagon to submit a new one.

The Pentagon's proposal turned out to be very much in line with Obama's plan: to rely on the SDF.

Turkey, a key US ally, has decried Washington's intentions, considering one of the SDF's main constituents - the Kurdish People's Protection Units (YPG) - a "terrorist" organisation. Alternately, Ankara has proposed using the lose formation of Syrian rebel factions under the umbrella of its Euphrates Shield operation to launch the offensive on Raqqa. The Euphrates Shield forces advanced as far as Al Bab, west of Raqqa, but their progress has been blocked by Syria's regime forces. 

Another scenario suggested that the Turkish-backed rebel groups enter into Syria through Tal Abyad, currently under SDF control and most likely will be fiercely opposed by the YPG. According to a third  proposal, a Syrian Kurdish force -  Peshmerga, trained by the Kurdish Regional Government (KRG) that is sympathetic to Ankara, would join the fight against ISIL in Syria and potentially the battle for Raqqa. This has also been rejected both by its Syrian Peshmerga commanders and by the YPG, which is hostile to the KRG.

Turkey's main argument for its participation has been that Raqqa needs to be liberated by an Arab-majority force, but the Kurdish-dominated SDF, it argues, is not and, therefore, will not be able to govern the city afterwards.

Arab nations participating in the US-led international anti-ISIL coalition, such as  Saudi Arabia and Jordan, have hinted at their participation - presenting a possible alternative - but no concrete proposals have been put forward.

Russia, too, has expressed its interest in participating in the battle, with defence ministry spokesman Konashenkov saying that "all forces fighting terrorism" must unite in order to capture Raqqa....

The facts are clear. There is absolutely no reason for the USA to become involved in Syria OR a threat to Iran. The region has been through enormous use of national resources to end a regime that grew under "W."

There is no reason for the USA to destabilize the region further than it had when Daesh launched a caliphate and killed ungodly numbers of innocent people.

October 7, 2017
By Louisa Loveluck and Liz Sly

...Perhaps more importantly, (click here) the Trump administration has not yet indicated whether it is prepared to stay on in northeastern Syria to provide protection for the fledgling ministate being forged by Syria’s Kurds. The experience over the past two days of the Kurds in neighboring Iraq may embolden the Syrian government to challenge the Syrian Kurdish enclave once the Islamic State is vanquished, just as the Iraqi government has moved to dislodge Kurdish forces from the oil-rich city of Kirkuk and other areas they controlled.

Syrian government officials have spoken on several occasions about their determination to regain control over all of the territory they lost to the rebellion against President Bashar al-Assad, including the area controlled by the Kurds.

“What would be disastrous for Syrian Kurds is a rapid U.S. drawdown in Syria. It would take away their major foreign patron,” said Nicholas A. Heras of the Center for a New American Security....

I remind. The global community has locked arms to end Daesh and it's charismatic movement. No one should be seeking to divide any of the military forces in this effort to end the occupation of Daesh in Raqqa. Carrying forward stability and a people's government to rebuild an economy is vital to Syria. A stable Syria will anchor a far better peace for the region.

I also remind, Syria has been the home of the Shi'ite Crescent. Plans to end the legitimate presence of Shi'ites is to be considered genocide. Iran is the country that carries the greatest concern for the Shi'ites in all their manifestation, including it's diaspora.

The manifestation of a continued civil war MUST be discouraged. The Syrian future depends on mutual respect for all religions within it's borders. The end of human rights is paramount to this goal.

The region has had enough of war and needs stability. The stability of the region should be paramount to the USA and not another immoral and illegal war into Iran.

The USA media tends to find better circulation numbers when providing "The Flag" at war. This false focus will never be tolerated by most Americans. Just sayin'.

......................................................

President Putin is talking about START (click here). This was the treaty "W" cancelled and wrote a 3 page document instead. Putin is correct, the USA has been playing a dangerous game. He stated Russia is still interested in START, but, believes the USA has yet to become significant partner.

START was re-engaged by President Obama.

...Aggregate limits: (click here)


  • 700 deployed intercontinental ballistic missiles (ICBMs), deployed submarine-launched ballistic missiles (SLBMs), and deployed heavy bombers equipped for nuclear armaments;
  • 1,550 nuclear warheads on deployed ICBMs, deployed SLBMs, and deployed heavy bombers equipped for nuclear armaments (each such heavy bomber is counted as one warhead toward this limit);
  • 800 deployed and non-deployed ICBM launchers, SLBM launchers, and heavy bombers equipped for nuclear armaments.

Verification and Transparency: The Treaty has a verification regime that combines appropriate elements of the 1991 START Treaty with new elements tailored to the limitations and structure of this Treaty. Verification measures under the Treaty include on-site inspections and exhibitions, data exchanges and notifications related to strategic offensive arms and facilities covered by the Treaty, and provisions to facilitate the use of national technical means for treaty monitoring. To increase confidence and transparency, the Treaty also provides for an annual exchange of telemetry on an agreed number of ICBM and SLBM launches....
During the elections of 2016, Russia is known to have stated, Donald Trump as President and Russia would re-engage in another arms race to outclass the rest of the world and bring about renewed interest in Anti-Proliferation. So, the idea President Putin is stating the USA is not engaging START and Russia is, is somewhat of a surprise and a renewed interest by Russia.

October 16, 2017
By Paul Roderick Gregory

Among Russia’s biggest headaches (click here) is the widespread condemnation of its annexation of Crimea in March of 2014. Vladimir Putin still smarts from the November 2016 International Criminal Court (ICC) finding that “there exists a sensible or reasonable justification for a belief that a crime [my italics] falling within the jurisdiction of the Court ‘has been or is being committed’” within the Crimean and Donbas territories of Ukraine. Upon issuance of this finding, an irate Russia withdrew from the ICC. Sanctions continue to threaten persons and companies associated with the Crimean takeover. United Nations investigators have documented evidence of arbitrary detentions, torture, abductions, and political murder in occupied Crimea.

I'll be honest here. When are the old communists going to move out of the Cold War and realize the world is becoming far smaller everyday? Annexing Crimea and launching a war along the Ukraine border only caused problems for Russia. Such aggression is very old world and launches sanctions that cause damage to the future of Russia.

The old communists need to stop playing politics with old world ideologies. The facts that Russia is once again, as a BRIC country, facing a stalled economy due to the isolation deemed vital to Russia's sovereignty. That is nonsense. Russia's economy has to be valuable to Russians and not simply hunker down into politics that should have been jettisoned decades ago. Putin hasn't always pandered to the old communists. That occurred about the time of his second victory to the Russian presidency. Isn't this old world ideology enough for Russians yet?

When Putin took the presidency for his first term he was far more a Yeltsin Russian than Stalin. What happened since his first term is wrongly viewed within Russia as a loss of national identity under Yeltsin and forced the politics to conservative Stalinism. That is really unfortunate.

Russia is a very old country and it needs to abandon the fear of the return of the Czars.

Putin sees in the Catalonian referendum an opportunity to convince the European Union, NATO, and the UN that it is time to recognize that Crimea belongs to Russia and to let bygones be bygones. After all, business and political interests in Europe are getting restive. They contend that, after almost four years, it is time to return to “business as usual” with Russia.

The Russian narrative characterizes Catalonia as yet another unintended consequence of NATO’s 2008 recognition of Kosovo’s independence from Russian ally, Serbia. (No mention of Serbia’s ethnic cleansing of Kosovars preceding independence). Per Russia, Kosovo opened the Pandora’s Box of independence movements, of which Catalonia is but the latest example. In the growing list of self-determination movements – Kosovo, Kurdish Iraq, Scotland, Crimea, Quebec, and now Catalonia -- why should Crimea and its new homeland, Russia, be the only ones singled out for sanctions? Says one insulted Russian commentator: The West “has no right to lecture Russia.” The West cannot punish those referendums whose outcome it dislikes and praise those it welcomes....

October 19, 2017

Spain is to start suspending Catalonia's autonomy (click here) from Saturday, as the region's leader threatens to declare independence.

The government said ministers would meet to activate Article 155 of the constitution, allowing it to take over running of the region.

Catalonia's leader said the region's parliament would vote on independence if Spain continued "repression".

Catalans voted to secede in a referendum outlawed by Spain.

Some fear the latest moves could spark further unrest after mass demonstrations before and since the ballot on 1 October.

Spain's supreme court declared the vote illegal and said it violated the constitution, which describes the country as indivisible.

Article 155 of the constitution, which cemented democratic rule three years after the death of dictator General Francisco Franco in 1975, allows Madrid to impose direct rule in a crisis but it has never been invoked.

BBC Madrid correspondent Tom Burridge says that for Madrid this is about upholding the rule of law in Catalonia, protecting the Spanish constitution and disciplining what it sees as an unruly, disobedient devolved government....

November 24, 2012
Stabilising Spain’s finances (click here) without tearing its social fabric apart is being made harder by a new wave of Catalan secessionism...

The real price of war is that it becomes never ending. The generals and presidents overseeing war then like to say, the price paid by precious lives is an investment in further war. If the lives were so precious, why was war engaged in the first place?

Other answers to conflicts must be sought to bring focus to economies that work for the people.

Ukraine:

October 19, 2017
By Natalia Zinets and Matthias Williams

Ukrainian lawmakers (click here) voted through a long-delayed overhaul of the health system on Thursday that the state's Western backers say will raise standards and tackle a culture of bribe-taking in surgeries and hospitals.

The European Union and the International Monetary Fund have been pressing for faster reform is a country where lives are more than five years shorter than the European average, according to the World Health Organization.

But opponents of the changes, including many opposition MPs, say the more Western-style system will force patients to pay for their medicines for the first time, leaving the poorest with no healthcare.

The legislation lets patients choose their own doctor, rather than have one foisted on them - a move the government said would encourage medics to improve service and give them less opportunity to demand kickbacks for treatment.

The bill also sets out which medicines are paid for by the state and which ones patients will have to buy themselves.

Backers have said it would be clearer than the present system, where medicines are in theory covered by the state, but patients often have to pay to get hold of pills when supplies run short....

October 19, 2017
By Christopher Miller

KYIV -- Protesters calling for Ukrainian President Petro Poroshenko (click here) to enact anticorruption reforms or step down notched a small victory on October 19 as parliament sent a bill on lifting lawmakers' immunity from prosecution to the Constitutional Court for review.

Hundreds of demonstrators aligned with opposition parties cheered the news when it was announced in front of the legislature, where they have been camping out in tents since October 17 to ratchet up pressure on Poroshenko to clamp down on what they see as rampant corruption in government.

Mustafa Nayyem, a reformist deputy and Poroshenko critic, called it "a small victory" for the opposition that is likely to appease the protesters for the time being.

Thousands of demonstrators have gathered outside the Verkhovna Rada in recent days in a mainly peaceful protest, though minor clashes with police have been reported....

October 19, 2017

The European Court of Justice (ECJ) (click here) has upheld sanctions imposed by the European Union on former Ukrainian President Viktor Yanukovych and his son Oleksandr.

The Luxembourg-based court confirmed on October 19 the freezing of their funds for the period from March 2015 until March 2016, upholding a previous ruling by the General Court.

In a statement, the ECJ said that Viktor and Oleksandr Yanukovych had challenged the EU sanctions that were imposed on the grounds that they were the subject of pretrial investigations in Ukraine for offenses linked to the misappropriation of public funds.

But the court said that the Yanukovychs' concerns over the impartiality of the Ukrainian judicial system "are not capable of calling into question the cogency of the charges made against them...or of demonstrating that their particular situation had been affected by the problems in the Ukrainian judicial system."...

end

Besides the incredible interview with Jane Mayer, which provides information to blog for the next year...

...What happened to the Iran Certification by Congress?

All of a sudden, Congress is back to health care when all they had to do was pass a veto proof one line bill that certifies Iran's nuclear agreement.

Joint Comprehensive Plan of Action (click here)

Vienna, 14 July 2015

The JCPOA cannot be amended. It is an international document and while the Congress wants to drop more and more conditions on the agreement, it is a vastly more complicated document. The USA alone does not enforce the JCPOA. Any changes would require new proceedings with the United Nations.

So, Congress simply has to validate the certification, which is known and is now entered into international law and then move on to ask the United Nation's Ambassador to pursue agreements with allies on other concerns with Iran. Most of those concerns already exist in one document or another at the UN.

Congress needs to do it's job.

Wednesday, October 18, 2017

The Tea Party saboteur, Vice President Pence. Welcome to the United States of Koch.

October 23, 2017 Edition
By Jane Mayer

"The Danger of President Pence" (click here)

Trump’s critics yearn for his exit. But Mike Pence, the corporate right’s inside man, poses his own risks....

In my travels on the way home today, I was listening to NPR. I hadn't read the article yet. I was far too busy this trip collecting the information of a delayed autumn. But, this time I wanted to drive awhile to get closer to home.

October 18, 2017
Host: Terry Gross

This is FRESH AIR. (click here) I'm Terry Gross. Many of President Trump's critics are hoping he won't serve his full term, but what kind of president would Mike Pence make? That's one of the questions Jane Mayer sets out to answer in her new article about Pence titled "The President Pence Delusion." It's published in the current issue of The New Yorker....

The interview by Gross of Mayer was lengthy, but, the more Ms. Mayer spoke the more intrigued I became. I have always considered Mike Pence a poor legislator from his time in the US House and I thought the Vice Presidency fits him somehow. Considering he would never be elected Governor again, I thought it a smart move.

For Pence, lawyering never seemed to pay as well as a place in government. Possibly in more ways than one. But, let me not imply corruption, so much as, permitted corruption in campaign donations that can be used for other things, like paying for lawyers and housing (including personal housing - hurry and pay off the mortgage if possible) during a campaign.

But, all corruption aside and not as a distraction; as Mayer spoke and Gross asked I realized Pence was sinking the Trump Tea Party agenda. But, why?

Why? Because Pence has always been in the Koch's back pocket. But, how is it the Koch's could back all these political PACS that demanded changes by Trump's administration while being sabotaged by their very financier?

27 July 2017

By Jacob Pramuk

Republican leaders working on tax reform say they have set aside the controversial border adjustment provision. (click here)


OMG, the very tax, which is really a tariff, Donald Trump promised his loyal voters he would pass as soon as in office was defeated. He believed the tax/tariff was to create competition in the American marketplace to ensure American jobs. It had failed to pass. Like, what the heck?

Pence. Pence lobbied for the Kochs in Congress to defeat "The Border Adjustment Tax." But, why would Pence go against the PACs that elected him? They were Koch PACS, so what was this all about? 

China. The Kochs have significant family members running a large business in China. If Trump was successful in passing "The Border Adjustment Tax" it would challenge the Koch's Chinese empire and could cause a loss of customers in the USA. Kochs still practiced cheap labor in China rather than building a Chinese Middle Class.

So, there it was right in front of me. Ms. Mayer going on about all things Pence and then the picture cleared. The Kochs could have control of everything. They obviously controlled political PACs that won elections; stacking the vote in the US House and possibly a Senator or two. And when it came to the legislation actually passed, the Kochs had control via Pence who had no re-election issues in House districts. 

The Tea Party was stabbed in the back by the very family money they need to survive and thrive. For the Kochs, it doesn't matter who wins an election so long as they are controlled when the time comes to vote.

So, you see. The GOP isn't running the country. Trump isn't running the country. The Kochs are running the country, compliments of a hostile Robert's court that calls political speech the most valuable speech. For the Kochs, that has never been truer.

Poor, Trump. He has no friends. There is a growing disapproval by the USA in general, there is disdain in Congress for him, his cabinet might be growing in skepticism in his ability to lead and now it would seem his Vice President is Delilah to Trump's Sampson. And to add to the betrayal are The Kochs; another private set of billionaires that do not compete with Trump in their business and that is even more interesting. The Koch Tail wagging the Trump Dog.

Indeed.

Tuesday, October 17, 2017

Any excuse is a good excuse. Russia is raiding Chechnya. It is looking for rebels and terrorists.

This is what nationalism does. There has to be some entity to blame for the effects of sanctions. Why not the gays and while at it let's round up the rebels and terrorists and call them gay.

The President of the Philippines got a phone call from the USA's President, this could be interesting on a global basis.

Pursuing peace rather than irritating the entire human race about differences is a far better path. President Putin needs to investigate these assertions.

Russia is an enormous country and the powers that rule locally can take on it's own persona. We have seen this before in Chechnya with soldiers making shame an issue with women in the streets. But, with the intensification of religious enthusiasm rising, this could be a very sad outcome no one in Moscow expected.

I fully expect improvement with this issue. This is a human rights violation. It needs to stop. If there are deaths, that needs to be reported to the international community.

President Putin needs to redefine what loyalty to Russia actually is and it doesn't mean Russian against Russian. I am sure there are many in Moscow, in the eastern region of Russia, surprised at these reports. There are many, not a few and there is every expectation there are much more torture taking place.

17 October 1917
By Sarah Rainsford

Six months after reports emerged (click here) that gay men were being detained illegally and tortured in the Russian republic of Chechnya, a young man has spoken publicly for the first time about his ordeal.

Maxim Lapunov has described being held for 12 days in a blood-soaked cell, beaten with sticks, threatened and humiliated by police.

But despite reporting what he endured to the authorities, his lawyer says no proper investigation has been conducted.

Mr Lapunov, who is 30 and from Siberia, had been working and living in Chechnya for two years when he alleges he was grabbed and dragged into a car one night in March by two men he didn't know....         

There is a serpent in the Atlantic Ocean. I honestly didn't think things could get much worse.

October 17, 2017
1030.17z
UNISYS Water Vapor GOES East Satellite (click here for 12 hour loop - thank you)

It was a real mistake to have a hurricane hit Ireland. It is a vortex unlike any before. Never saw such a thing before. What have we done?

Similar to a tornado, there are storms within the storm.


October 17, 2017
1130.18z 
UNISYS Water Vapor Satellite of the north and west hemisphere (click here for 12 hour loop - thank you)


October 17, 2017
1130.18z 
Water Vapor GOES West Satellite (click here for 12 hour loop - thank you)

Hawaii has been having rain and wind over the past week. Ireland is not at all ready for hurricanes.

The north Atlantic has never been like this before. Earth's revenge against abuse is wind and plenty of it.

17 October 2017

Two men and a woman (click here) have been killed as the remnants of Hurricane Ophelia hit the British Isles.

As hurricane-force gusts battered the Republic of Ireland, one woman and a man died in separate incidents when trees fell on their cars.



A second man died in a chainsaw accident while attempting to remove a tree felled by the storm.

Thousands of homes and businesses lost power in Northern Ireland and Wales, along with 360,000 in the Republic.

The power company Northern Ireland Electricity said 15,000 households in the province should prepare to spend Monday night without power.

Police in Scotland say the storm has hit Dumfries and Galloway and it is forecast to continue over the region into the evening.

And in Cumbria, police in Barrow closed roads around Barrow AFC's stadium after wind damaged its roof....

Monday, October 16, 2017

My trip is going well.

Senator McCain it would seem this is your time. Bring the country home, sir. Make us proud again.

October 16, 2017
By Brandon Carter

Sen. John McCain (R-Ariz.) (click here) blasted “half-baked, spurious nationalism” in the United States in an emotional speech Monday night after receiving the National Constitution Center’s Liberty Medal.
“To fear the world we have organized and led for three-quarters of a century, to abandon the ideals we have advanced around the globe, to refuse the obligations of international leadership and our duty to remain 'the last best hope of earth' for the sake of some half-baked, spurious nationalism cooked up by people who would rather find scapegoats than solve problems is as unpatriotic as an attachment to any other tired dogma of the past that Americans consigned to the ash heap of history,” McCain said in the speech....

Saturday, October 14, 2017

Volunteering this evening. Then planning to travel until Friday.

Until later.

This is from "YouGov." It is a global consensus.



Secretary of State Rex Tillerson is now viewed more positively than negatively (click here)

"YouGov" also concentrated on the Republicans to understand the opinion of President Trump.

The Republican Congress needs to think clearly about their choices in understanding their own party.

October 10, 2017

Donald Trump’s approval rating in Economist/YouGov polls has been hovering just below 40% since the summer. This week marks the latest low for this President: just 36% approve. More than half do not..

More than twice as many say they “strongly disapprove” (42%) as “strongly approve” (19%).
The President continues to receive support from his party’s rank and file – 81% of Republicans approve, while 16% do not. And just over half of Republicans approve strongly.
Last week, Republican Senator Bob Corker, the chair of the Senate’s Foreign Relations Committee, suggested that Secretary of State Rex Tillerson, Secretary of Defense Jim Mattis, and White House Chief of Staff John Kelly “help separate our country from chaos.” In this week’s poll, all three men are seen favorably by the public....

...Two other very prominent advisors to the President – his daughter Ivanka and his son-in-law Jared Kushner – do not reach the same level of public support as Tillerson, Mattis, and Kelly. Only 38% of Americans have a favorable opinion of the President’s daughter, her lowest percentage this year. Kushner received mixed reviews earlier in the administration, but now opinion is clearly negative.

The Joint Comprehensive Plan of Action is extensive across the P5 (Permanent Five Members) + 1 (Germany) countries and does not exist because the USA is a member. It's scope is beyond that.

Full Text of the JCPOA (click here)

Short Title


Pub. L. 112–239, div. A, title XII, §1241, Jan. 2, 2013, 126 Stat. 2004, provided that: "This subtitle [subtitle D (§§1241–1255) of title XII of div. A of Pub. L. 112–239, enacting this chapter and section 8514c of this title, amending sections 8513a and 8551 of this title and section 2335 of Title 18, Crimes and Criminal Procedure (click here), and enacting provisions set out as notes under sections 2333 and 2335 of Title 18] may be cited as the 'Iran Freedom and Counter-Proliferation Act of 2012'." (click here)

Ex. Ord. 13716 (click here) Revocation of Executive Orders 13574, (click here) 13590 (click here), 13622 (click here), and 13645 (click here) With Respect to Iran, Amendment of Executive Order 13628 (click here) With Respect to Iran, and Provision of Implementation Authorities for Aspects of Certain Statutory Sanctions Outside the Scope of U.S. Commitments Under the Joint Comprehensive Plan of Action of July 14, 2015

October 18, 2015
Presidential Memorandum (click here)

Preparing for Implementation of the Joint Comprehensive Plan of Action of July 14, 2015 (JCPOA)


MEMORANDUM FOR THE SECRETARY OF STATE
                                 THE SECRETARY OF THE TREASURY
                                 THE SECRETARY OF COMMERCE
                                 THE SECRETARY OF ENERGY
SUBJECT: Preparing for Implementation of the Joint Comprehensive Plan of Action of July 14, 2015 (JCPOA)

Today, October 18, 2015, marks Adoption Day under the JCPOA, the day on which the JCPOA comes into effect and all JCPOA participants, including the United States, are to make the necessary arrangements and preparations for implementation of their respective JCPOA commitments.
Consistent with section 11 of Annex V of the JCPOA, the Secretary of State, acting under previously delegated authority, is taking action with respect to waivers of relevant statutory sanctions, to take effect upon confirmation by the Secretary of State that Iran has implemented the nuclear-related measures specified in sections 15.1-15.11 of Annex V of the JCPOA, as verified by the International Atomic Energy Agency (IAEA).
I hereby direct you to take all appropriate additional measures to ensure the prompt and effective implementation of the U.S. commitments set forth in the JCPOA, in accordance with U.S. law. In particular, subject to the requirements of applicable U.S. law, I hereby direct you to take all necessary steps to give effect to the U.S. commitments with respect to sanctions described in section 17 of Annex V of the JCPOA, including preparation for the termination of Executive Orders as specified in section 17.4 and the licensing of activities as set forth in section 17.5, to take effect upon confirmation by the Secretary of State that Iran has implemented the nuclear-related measures specified in sections 15.1-15.11 of Annex V of the JCPOA, as verified by the IAEA.
In discharging these responsibilities, you are directed to consult with the heads of other executive departments and agencies as may be appropriate.
The Secretary of State is hereby authorized and directed to publish this memorandum in the Federal Register.

Annex V - Implementation Plan1 (click here)

...11. The United States, acting pursuant to Presidential authorities, will issue waivers, to take effect upon Implementation Day, ceasing the application of the statutory nuclear-related sanctions as specified in Sections 17.1 to 17.2 of this Annex. The President will also take action to direct that all appropriate additional measures be taken to implement the cessation of application of sanctions as specified in Sections 17.1 to 17.4 of this Annex, including the termination of Executive orders as specified in Section 17.4, and the licensing of activities as specified in Section17.5....

...13. The EU, its Member States and the United States will begin consultation as appropriate with Iran regarding relevant guidelines and publicly accessible

statements on the details of sanctions or restrictive measures to be lifted under
this JCPOA....

17. The United States will:2

17.1. Cease the application of the sanctions set forth in Sections 4.1 - 4.5 and 4.7 of Annex II, with the exception of Section 211(a) of the Iran Threat Reduction and Syria Human Rights Act of 2012 (TRA) (click here);

17.2. Cease the application of the sanctions set forth in Section 4.6 of Annex II (click here), in connection with activities consistent with this JCPOA, including trade with individuals and entities set forth in Attachment 3 to Annex II;

17.3. Remove individuals and entities set forth in Attachment 3 to Annex II from the Specially Designated Nationals and Blocked Persons List (SDN List), the Foreign Sanctions Evaders List (FSE List), and/or the Non-SDN Iran Sanctions Act List as set forth in Section 4.8.1 of Annex II;

17.4. Terminate Executive Orders 13574 (click here), 13590 (click here), 13622 (click here), 13645 (click here) and Sections 5-7 and 15 of Executive Order 13628 (click here) as set forth in Section 4 of Annex II; and

17.5. License activities as set forth in Section 5 of Annex II....

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Ex. Ord. No. 13716, Jan. 16, 2016, 81 F.R. 3693, provided:

By the authority vested in me as President by the Constitution and the laws of the United States of America, including the International Emergency Economic Powers Act (50 U.S.C. 1701 et seq.) (IEEPA), the National Emergencies Act (50 U.S.C. 1601 et seq.) (NEA), the Iran Sanctions Act of 1996 (Public Law 104–172) (50 U.S.C. 1701 note), the Comprehensive Iran Sanctions, Accountability, and Divestment Act of 2010 (Public Law 111–195) (22 U.S.C. 8501 et seq.), the Iran Threat Reduction and Syria Human Rights Act of 2012 (Public Law 112–158), the Iran Freedom and Counter-Proliferation Act of 2012 (subtitle D of title XII of Public Law 112–239) (22 U.S.C. 8801 et seq.) (IFCA), section 212(f) of the Immigration and Nationality Act of 1952 (8 U.S.C. 1182(f)), and section 301 of title 3, United States Code,...